David Nolan set an American record in the 200 IM, winning the event in 1:39.38 at the NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships in Iowa City on Thursday. Nolan became the first swimmer to go under 1:40 in the event.
"It's always been a goal for me since I was in high school," Nolan said. "It's fun to have it happen."
Nolan couldn't see the leader board right away, with the flags getting in his way. He didn't feel like he got off to a good start with the back stroke.
"It didn't feel that fast, but I activated my gluts as Tiger (Woods) once said," said Nolan, who also took down the U.S. Open and NCAA records, plus his own Stanford mark.
After winning the Pac-12 title in the 200 IM with a 1:40.07, the time of 1:39.4 popped into his head for the NCAA meet.
"After the morning I knew I had a lot more in me," Nolan said. "I was confident coming into the final."
Sacred Heart Prep grad Tom Kremer finished fourth in the same race, going 1:42.43 and Kristian Ipsen was third in the one-meter diving event for Stanford, which finds itself in seventh, with 75 points, after the first day of competition.
Nolan will swim this summer with an eye toward qualifying for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.
"This could be my last short course 200 IM," he said. "Obviously the goal is 2016 but I will take it one meet at a time. I've always liked long course better."
Nolan, who also won the 200 IM at the 2013 NCAA Championships, earned Stanford's 114th individual NCAA title and NCAA-best 11th in the event.
"His year-long focus and effort produced the milestone swim," Cardinal coach Ted Knapp said. "The team, and especially his training group, played a huge role in his success, as well as the athletic training and sports performance staffs. He is ready to continue to make huge contributions over the next two days."
Texas holds a 171-119 lead over Cal to lead the team standings with two days remaining at the meet.
Florida (108) and Michigan (105) follow the top two spots in front of Alabama (79), USC (77) and Stanford.
Ipsen's bid at a second title on the 1-meter was stopped by Purdue's Steele Johnson, who scored 468.15. Ipsen, who won the event in 2013, took third with 449.45 points. Bradley Christensen (341.20) was 18th overall.
Sam Perry, Jeff Garnier, Connor Black and Spencer DeShon went 1:18.03 for 14th in the 200-yard freestyle relay to open the meet.
The Cardinal won the consolation final in the 400 medley relay, placing ninth in 3:05.49 with a combined effort from Kremer, Nolan, Umbach and Thomas Stephens.